A great Professional Services Automation (PSA) tool is a vital asset for companies in the professional services industry. It serves as a comprehensive platform that streamlines project management, resource allocation, and financial operations.
Picking the right PSA tool for your organization is key when it comes to adoption and using software that matches how you want to work, we delve into more detail in this article.
In this guide, we will discuss:
- The benefits of implementing PSA tools
- How to choose the best PSA tool for your business
- And the best PSA tools that are available to you
How PSA Tools help Professional Services Firms
Using a PSA tool helps professional service companies thrive, increasing productivity and profitability, here are 4 ways a PSA tool can help:
- Efficient Resource Allocation: PSA tools assist professional service firms in optimizing resource allocation by providing real-time visibility into staff availability and project demands. This ensures that the right individuals are assigned to the right projects, preventing overallocation and enhancing workload distribution.
- Streamlined Project Management: PSA tools centralize project management tasks, enabling firms to track project progress, manage tasks, allocate resources, and monitor budgets from a single platform. This streamlines project execution and improves overall project visibility.
- Accurate Billing and Revenue Recognition: PSA tools automate billing processes and revenue recognition, reducing errors and ensuring that firms accurately invoice clients for billable hours and expenses. This leads to improved cash flow and financial transparency.
- Data-Driven Decision-Making: PSA tools provide valuable insights through analytics and reporting features, enabling firms to make data-driven decisions. These insights help in forecasting, risk management, and resource planning, ultimately improving operational efficiency and profitability.
What are the Best PSA Tools?
Selecting the most suitable PSA tools for your business will hinge on your specific requirements. To guide your evaluation of various AI-powered software solutions, here are some pertinent questions to ponder:
What Do You Want a PSA tool to Help You With?
- Does the tool provide a feature that addresses your business concerns?
- Are you looking for basic automation, smart insights or both?
Is the Tool Easy to Use and Setup?
- How intuitive is the tool's interface and is it easy to use?
- How much dedicated time do you have for setup and teaching your team how to use the tool?
How Flexible is the Tool?
- Can the software adapt to the needs of your business?
- Will the tool help standardize a part of your business?
Look for a PSA tool that not only improves your operational processes but also helps you deliver a better service to your customers.
We have referred to ratings on G2.com to compile a list of the top PSA tools for startups and businesses of all sizes.
The Top 10 PSA Tools
Forecast: The Best Overall AI PSA Tool
Overview: Forecast stands out as one of the top AI-powered PSA (Professional Services Automation) tools for handling projects comprehensively, from inception to completion. This PSA software offers a consolidated platform that streamlines the entire project lifecycle, encompassing project initiation, budgeting, resource allocation, task oversight, invoicing, and reporting. It incorporates automation and intelligent insights tailored to your professional services, making it a versatile and all-encompassing PSA solution.
With Forecast as your PSA tool, you gain access to a unified ecosystem that seamlessly integrates with your existing software stack. This means you can manage your projects, resources, and financials all within one cohesive platform. The result is a significant enhancement in your internal operations, fostering smoother project execution, enhanced cross-team collaboration, heightened overall efficiency, and improved profitability for your professional services firm.
G2 User Review "Using Forecast has been a game-changing experience for our team. The extensive interface and powerful features of Forecast have significantly improved our forecasting accuracy. The tool's ability to give us a complete view of our historical data and provide real-time insights empowers us to make well-informed decisions.”
G2 Rating: 4.2 / 5.0
Replicon / Polaris: The Best for Deltek Integrations
Overview: Polaris PSA represents a cutting-edge solution in the realm of Professional Services Automation (PSA) software, offering a suite of advanced project management tools to empower service-based businesses. This platform harnesses the power of artificial intelligence to provide a range of benefits, including real-time project tracking, predictive analytics, and customizable reporting.
G2 User Review: “The thing I like the best about Replicon, is that whenever I have a problem, I can call customer support and they are very helpful. If necessary, they'll set up a Zoom meeting and take over the controls to show me exactly what to do. Once completed, they send an email detailing what was done. I can keep the email for a reminder if I don't remember for next time.”
G2 Rating: 4.6 /5
Parallax: Best for sales pricing and resourcing
Overview: Parallax is a service operations software that offers resource planning and management, sales pricing and forecasting, project financials, and business intelligence functions. It helps digital service companies consolidate their data and operations, reducing disconnects and app-switching..
G2 User Review: "Parallax has helped enforce a greater degree of data validity across our sales, delivery, and finance operations. The team at Parallax have been great partners in helping us get up and running and also refine the product to our specific needs."
G2 Rating: 4.8 / 5
Kantata: Best for traditional PS firms
Overview: Kantata is the combination of what was Kimble and Mavenlink. Kanata aims to be the industry cloud for professional services organizations. The base of software is over 20 years old and is therefore more traditional in its ways of working. With Kantata you can utilize features like Dynamic Resource Optimization, teams can be deployed quickly to respond to changing business conditions.
The software features powerful resource allocation management, plus project management and team collaboration features. Business intelligence and actionable insights inform management decisions. Timelines, budgets, and clients can be managed to produce the best outcomes for the company and for clients.
G2 User Review: “As a SaaS solution provider, we were looking for a professional services management tool that provided the key elements of project performance tracking (tasks, margin, etc.), team utilization, resource planning, and finally project execution collaboration with our end clients. Kantata OX provided a combined and integrated solution to address all of these needs in one package.
The onboarding and adoption process with the Kantata team was excellent. Our implementation manager set a very clear path for us to succeed - ensuring we did not go too fast or too deep/wide at the start, but focusing on the key elements of the product that we needed to implement successfully to drive the initial value we were looking for. We are now 2 months into the post-deployment phase and we are using Kantata OX effectively to track our ongoing projects, get visibility into team utilization, and provide a collaborative interface for our end clients. The last aspect is highly valuable - having a single sheet of paper (Task Tracker/Gantt) that our customers can see the plan, the progress against that plan, and can track their tasks that support that plan as well.”
G2 Rating: 4.2 / 5
VOGSY: Best free starting solution for small businessesOverview: VOGSY is a unified project and resource platform that makes it easy to set up new countries, track international projects, and connect local finance packages. It’s great for smaller professional services firms that are just starting out because it has a freemium model.
It offers smaller business the opportunity to use a PSA system and get up and running from their mobile phone and manage the process of client inception from lead through to onboarding a new client easily.
G2 Review: “Vogsy is capable of supporting the complete lead2cash cycle. At the same time Vogsy is very flexible, we started of from project2bill, now we have opportunity2bill.
The best feature by far is the fact that Vogsy is mobile-first. In combination with the awesome charts this gives everyone an up-to-the-minute sense of what is happening and where we're going."
BigTime: Best PSA Tool for time tracking
Overview: BigTime is a leading Professional Services Automation (PSA) software that helps you scale your business by giving you the ability to track and act on your operational metrics. With remote work, you can easily manage time, expenses, and billing for multiple projects all at once, and quickly identify areas of opportunity with advanced features like resource allocation and custom reporting.
G2 Review: “BigTime has made it much easier for our small team to log time and expenses against projects and invoice our clients. It integrates well with QuickBooks (with some exceptions) and makes it easy to monitor the work in progress (WIP).
There are a lot of good and necessary features, such as assigning staff hourly charge out and cost rates that allow for flexibility when creating different types of projects and budgets. It also offers several different invoicing methods. There are many customizable ways to generate reports and I have been happy with how I can customize the reports based on my needs. The timesheet and expense submission interfaces are intuitive and easy to use, so it was easy to train staff.”
Certinia: Best for those used to Salesforce
Overview: Certinia (previously FinancialForce PSA) is native to Salesforce, sharing the same customer record, user experience, and industry leading analytics with the Salesforce platform which helps people transition easily if they are use to Salesforce. Certinia can give your team the ability to collaborate in real-time across your entire services business and deliver truly differentiated customer outcomes.
G2 Review: “Being able to see a project's status, resource utilization, and financial performance in real time is one of FinancialForce PSA's main advantages. Users can use this to make data-driven decisions and track key performance indicators instantly.
Enabling users to anticipate project profitability and detect possible problems before they happen, the enhanced forecasting skills are equally amazing. Its flexibility and scalability also make the software a good choice for businesses of all kinds, and its mobile accessibility and Salesforce connection further enhance its allure. It is easy to use and easy to implement.”
G2 Rating: 4.3 / 5
Workday: Best if you already have the Workday Platform
Overview: Workday Professional Services Automation (PSA) offers customers a comprehensive solution for managing the entire lifecycle of their client-facing billable projects. Users from various departments, including sales, resource management, project management, and finance, benefit from a unified platform that provides access to a centralized repository of data.
This platform leverages talent intelligence to facilitate the optimal matching of personnel with specific projects. Additionally, it offers flexible billing and revenue recognition capabilities, providing customers with the confidence to drive forward their business transformation initiatives. The integration of all Workday applications across finance, HR, and operations into a single system fosters improved collaboration, heightened efficiency, enhanced insight, and superior customer service.
G2 Review: “I love that I can submit my own hours as I work them and that I can request vacation time at any time I please and know that it will go straight to my supervisor for review. My old system had me email requesting time off and I barely knew how much vacation time I have accrued throughout the year or the amount of sick time I had available to me. In that sense, that was valuable information to me.”
G2 Rating: 4.0/5
PSOhub: Best for free project management
Overview: PSOhub provides unique All-in-One Project Management software through predictive project management, smart resource management, self-driving time and expense tracking, and invoicing in a seamlessly integrated platform.
G2 Review: “PSOHub allows us to integrate with our deals created on HubSpot to create a project directly once the agreement has been signed. It gives natural integrations for our other platforms, such as Xero and Slack. We can include files and comments within tasks to track the various sites within a job.
G2 rating: 4.4 / 5.0
Birdview: Best for simple UI
Overview: Birdview is a comprehensive, full-cycle platform aiding organizations to plan, manage, and forecast resources, finances, and projects in one place. It offers total project visibility, enabling teams and clients to oversee their projects effectively, thus promoting growth and streamlined processes.
Tailored to meet evolving business needs, Birdview allows efficient management of multiple projects with customizable views, centralized data, and balanced workloads. It also facilitates precise financial management and budgeting.
G2 Review: “I recently had the pleasure of using Birdview for the project management of two construction works of manufacturing facilities in Europe, and I must say, it has greatly simplified our planning and timeline creation processes. As someone who handles multiple projects simultaneously, finding an intuitive and efficient tool was crucial, and Birdview exceeded my expectations.
One of the standout features of the software is its user-friendly interface. Navigating through the software is a breeze, and even those who are new to project management tools will quickly adapt. Many functionalities make it effortless to create and modify project plans and timelines, saving us valuable time in the process.”
G2 Rating: 4.2 / 5.0
Selecting the right Professional Services Automation (PSA) tool is a critical decision for businesses in the professional services industry. It involves a careful evaluation of various factors to ensure the chosen PSA tool aligns with your specific needs and objectives.
Your key considerations should include assessing the tool's features, scalability, integration capabilities, ease of use, and support offerings.
By thoroughly examining these aspects and aligning them with your companies requirements, you can make an informed choice that enhances project management, resource allocation, financial accuracy, and overall efficiency, ultimately contributing to the success of your business.
We hope this list has been useful in your buying process and takes you step closer to choosing and implementing the right PSA tool for your business!
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